10 Best Cystic Acne Treatments In 2020

by Ramona Sinha
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Acne has many types and forms, and amongst all, cystic acne is the most severe and toughest one to treat. These are cysts or nodules that affects the deeper layers of your skin. Dermatologists often recommend a combination of topical and oral treatments for dealing with cystic acne. However, you can also try OTC cystic acne treatments at home for a week or two. If the issue persists beyond two weeks, consult a doctor immediately. If you are dealing with cystic acne and want to try out OTC products, here are the 10 best cystic acne treatments that can help get the job done. Read on to know more!

Products
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Avarelle Acne Cover Patch
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Differin Gel Adapalene Gel 0.1% Acne Treatment
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Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser
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Acne Free Oil-Free Acne Cleanser
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Differin Daily Deep Cleanser
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La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo Acne Treatment
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Proactiv Emergency Blemish Relief
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PanOxyl Acne Creamy Wash
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KILLA Kit by ZitSticka
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Glytone Acne Treatment Spray
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Top 10 Cystic Acne Treatments To Try At Home

1. Avarelle Acne Cover Patch

The Avarelle Acne Patch is made with hydrocolloid dressing, tea tree, and calendula oils that are extremely gentle on your skin and help to extract the gunk and clear zita. It contains Centella Asiatica (often referred to as Cica), a powerhouse of antioxidants that promotes healing. The patches come in different sizes and blend well with all skin tones.

Pros

  • Available in different sizes
  • Easy-peel design
  • Dust-free
  • Re-sealable packaging
  • Hydrocolloid technology
  • Drug-free
  • Sticks well
  • Works on all skin types

Cons

  • May not work on severe cystic acne.

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2. Differin Gel Adapalene Gel 0.1% Acne Treatment

Dermatologists often prescribe retinoids for treating acne. If you want to try a similar OTC formulation, check out the Differin Gel. It contains 0.1% adapalene, a retinoid-like compound that has similar effects. It reduces inflammation, cleanses the skin pores, and restores the skin texture. You have to use it as a spot treatment in your morning or evening skin care routine.

Pros

  • FDA approved
  • Developed by dermatologists
  • Alcohol-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Oil-free
  • Water-based formula
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Reduces scarring
  • Reduces hyperpigmentation

Cons

None

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3. Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser

When you have cystic acne, you need to go easy on the facial cleanser and use a mild formula. The Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser cleanses your skin thoroughly without drying it. It is a low-lather formula that does not damage the natural moisture shield of your skin. This clinically proven product is suitable for normal, oily, and sensitive skin types.

Pros

  • Dermatologist-recommended
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Clinically-proven
  • Aluminum-free
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Mild
  • Non-irritating

Cons

  • Some users may not like the fragrance.

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4. Acne Free Oil-Free Acne Cleanser

The Acne-Free Oil-Free Cleanser contains 2.5% advanced micronized benzoyl peroxide – an effective anti-acne ingredient. It clears and prevents blackheads, whiteheads, pimples, and cystic acne. It contains ceramides that soothe inflammation and promote healing. The ceramides also help maintain the natural moisture barrier of the skin and keep your dehydrated skin moist.

Pros

  • Safe for face and body acne
  • Dermatologist recommended
  • Fragrance-free
  • Reduce blemishes

Cons

  • May dry out sensitive skin.

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5. Differin Daily Deep Cleanser

The Differin Daily Deep Cleanser is for those with sensitive skin. It contains 5% benzoyl peroxide that cleanses the skin thoroughly, reduces excess oil, and prevents further inflammation. It is less abrasive on your face and prevents redness and irritation.

Pros

  • Paraben-free
  • No harsh chemicals
  • Hydrating

Cons

  • Might not suit dry skin.

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6. La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo Acne Treatment

If you want visible results, this product claims to give it in just three days. The La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo Acne Treatment is a widely used OTC product for acne control. It is an oil-free formula that contains micro-exfoliating LHA (Lipo-Hydroxy Acid) and benzoyl peroxide that go deep inside the skin pores and clear blackheads and whiteheads. It is suitable for all skin types, including sensitive skin.

Pros

  • Dermatologist tested
  • Suitable for sensitive skin
  • Non-drying
  • Fast absorbing
  • Oil-free
  • Paraben-free

Cons

  • Might cause mild irritation.

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7. Proactiv Emergency Blemish Relief

This is an extremely effective spot-treatment for stubborn cystic acne. The Proactive Emergency Blemish Relief contains prescription-grade (5%) micro-crystal benzoyl peroxide. You have to apply a thin layer of the product to the affected area. It helps to absorb excess oil, clean the skin pore, reduce acne inflammation, and prevent blemishes.

Pros

  • Dermatologist tested
  • Non-comedogenic

Cons

  • Not suitable for sensitive skin
  • Expensive for the quantity

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8. PanOxyl Acne Creamy Wash

The active ingredient of this product is 4% benzoyl peroxide. It contains three emollients and four humectants to balance out the drying nature of benzoyl peroxide. The PanOxyl Acne Creamy Wash is gentle yet powerful that clears up existing acne quickly, controls oil production, and prevents new blemishes. It helps your skin shed dead cells and prevent clogging the pores.

Pros

  • pH-balanced
  • Non-irritating
  • Non-drying

Cons

  • Might not suit sensitive skin.

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9. KILLA Kit by ZitSticka

This acne patch is unlike other hydrocolloid patches. The Killa Kit is meant for acne in its early stages. This hydrocolloid patch has a Microdart delivery system that helps deliver the ingredients to the zit to stop its progress. It contains salicylic acid, a potent acne-fighting ingredient, along with niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, and oligopeptide-76. These ingredients calm the zit and aid skin healing.

Pros

  • Vegan
  • Cruelty-free
  • Dermatologist-backed

Cons

  • Expensive

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10. Glytone Acne Treatment Spray

Got acne on your back and shoulders? This ingredient-driven acne treatment spray by Glyton can help. The formula contains salicylic acid that helps dissolve dirt and oil, along with benzoyl peroxide to kill the acne-causing bacteria and sulfur to absorb excess oil and clear the breakouts.

Pros

  • Fragrance-free
  • Non-comedogenic
  • Oil-free

Cons

  • Expensive

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The products mentioned in the above list are effective to a certain degree and work on mild to moderate acne. However, using them may not “treat” cystic acne. You will need to use these products along with ointments, medications, and other treatment methods (after consulting a dermatologist) to keep your acne under control and prevent any scarring and blemishes. Go ahead and choose a product from our list that you think can address your condition. In case you experience any irritation, consult a dermatologist immediately.

Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions

Does cystic acne go away?

Cystic acne improves with proper treatment. You need to consult a doctor and follow the medications to get clear skin.

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Ramona Sinha

Ramona is a journalist-turned-content writer. She holds a Master’s degree in English Literature and has been writing for the digital world for over five years. She specializes in writing for Skin Care. She has done a certificate course titled ‘Dermatology: Trip To The Skin’, offered by Novosibirsk State University. She believes that beauty begins with a good skin care regimen and is on a mission to eliminate all toxins from her routine. She helps and guides readers in selecting products and ingredients specific to their skin type/issue. When Ramona is not working, her books and passion for music, good food, and traveling keep her busy.
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